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WoW: Community Council works - developers speak openly as never before

When Blizzard announced the creation of the Community Council, also known as the Council of Players, some time ago, there was a lot of skepticism on the part of the players. There were many accusations against Blizzard, ranging from a PR ploy to fears of creating an elitist circle of players who would talk after the developers. The developers have earned this negative sentiment over the course of the past few years. By consistently ignoring suggestions from the forum or the fact that they openly and blatantly communicated that they knew better than the players themselves. Cue: "You think you do, but you don't!"

In the meantime, however, the players' council has been running for some time and the first signs look more positive than negative. Many of the developers have officially introduced themselves in the forum and not only give an insight into their experiences within the game, but also into their area of responsibility at Blizzard. And of course, various player members of the council have already introduced themselves as well.

WoW: The Council of Players - Trailer introduces new Community Council

Constructive discussions instead of flaming

Of course, the Community Council Forum doesn't have a ton of threads yet. However, the two dozen or so discussions that have taken place so far already paint a pretty clear picture. In contrast to the "normal" forums, where anyone can post, many constructive discussions have arisen in the Player Council, where individual players state their positions and talk objectively about what effects which decision would have on them and their fellow players.
WoW still has many fans who love the game - but would still like to see improvements. Source: Tony Hsu / Blizzard

You won't find any insults, disparagement or flaming. Due to the lack of "small wars", which often arise in other discussion threads, the communication is much more purposeful, which should also make Blizzard's work easier. Instead of searching for constructive arguments and well-founded opinions in hundreds of posts, they are presented with them in pure form in the Community Council. And because of the diversity of the forum members, they see several sides and points of view at the same time.

Developers open like rarely before

But not only the players discuss open-heartedly and purposefully. The developers also show a long-forgotten side. Instead of throwing around PR phrases and defensive statements, they openly provide insights into the development of WoW (buy now ). For example, Zahko recently explained in detail how the path of a boss during the PTR test

proceeds and why they currently do not want to announce them earlier, although they could.

Greg Street, also known as Ghostcrawler, has been very active in communicating directly with players. He is now working on a new MMO at Riot. Source: Blizzard Entertainment

Zahko, by the way, is not a community manager whose job is to communicate with players. He is the Lead Encounter Designer in Blizzard's WoW team. This is also a big change. Instead of using community managers as an intermediary, the developers are now communicating more with the players themselves, which is being very, very positively received by them. For one thing, the developers naturally know much more and better about many things than a community manager ever could. On the other hand, the players can be sure that their feedback will be received and not lost or distorted somewhere between the various CCs and the developers.

It was precisely this direct communication with players that was one of Blizzard's biggest assets back in the day, when Greg "Ghostcrawler" Street

made greater use of it, earning him a lot of recognition and a good reputation in the community.

No more PR blah blah

Of course, the devs won't spend half their workday discussing it with players now, and there will certainly still be plenty of things the devs won't or can't talk about. But at least the time of PR babble seems to be over. In the past, and at least I'm sure of it, the answer to the question about the PTR test announcements would have been different, if there had been one at all.
I wonder if the developers will take players' opinions into account when continuing the story in the future? Source: Blizzard We would have had to be satisfied with something along the lines of "Sorry, but unfortunately this is not possible any other way due to internal processes". For my part, I'm not at all angry with the developers if they have to say in some places that they don't want to talk about it or can't reveal a certain process. If they communicate that honestly and don't just spout some PR phrase.

A big step in the right direction

All in all, the Community Council is a step in the right direction, and this is already evident weeks after implementation. Of course, it won't suddenly turn shit into gold, but it should definitely reduce the chance of failures in the future.

The developers get unadulterated feedback from several areas of the game and should thus have significantly more and better perspectives for future decisions. The players, on the other hand, finally feel taken seriously again. Because you talk to them, you don't consistently ignore them, and thanks to the openness, you feel like you're communicating at eye level.

Systems like the azerite armor were criticized even before the release of BfA. However, the developers ignored this feedback. Source: Blizzard Now, of course, this still has to be reflected in the upcoming content of WoW. The first topics in this regard, for example the potential dissolution of faction borders, the return to the loot master or the future of external cool downs are already being discussed extensively. Hopefully, the developers will draw the right conclusions from the feedback. The excuse that important feedback did not reach them will no longer be valid in the next expansion.

Have you read around in the Community Council forum or are you even in the official council of the players? Unfortunately we were not selected. But at least we are not alone, Asmongold was not allowed to participate either.

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